Monday, June 13, 2011

No Smell of Smoke

Belinda Kersey

God’s Word
Daniel 3:25 He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”
Daniel 3:27 “... They saw that the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor was a hair of their heads singed; their robes were not scorched, and there was no smell of fire on them.”

The Song
"Through the Fire" words and music by Gerald Crabb

My Thoughts
If I ever felt a song was mine, this is it!  Some of these lines  really hit home. "Many times in trials, weakness blurs my vision, that's when my frustration gets so out of hand.  Oh, but it's then I am reminded, that I've never been forsaken, and I've never had to stand one test alone.  Then I look at all my victories and the spirit rises up in me and it's through the fire my weakness is made
strong!"  You see, before I knew I had MS, my vision was affected first.  It was as though there was a veil of lace over my eyes-very blurry.  It was incredibly frustrating.  I couldn't read, drive or watch TV.  I feared losing my vision but God was faithful and walked with me through that time.  I've had victory over vision problems since 2003.  However, as you know, I am still not fully healed, I still can not walk and have several "invisible" problems. But I know  God will continue to be with me in this fire.

Through this experience God has taught me healing is not the ultimate testimony.  Please don't turn me off now that I have stepped on a "sacred cow", just settle down and listen.  I truly believe healing should be sought  and I truly believe we should have faith God will heal.  However, I believe the best testimony you can have is when you stay faithful to God "through the fire".  My pastor even made that statement after I sang this song one Sunday.  It was just another confirmation to me of what the Lord has been teaching me.  The 2nd verse of the song says "I know within myself that I would surely perish, but if I trust the hand of God I know he'll shield the flames again." I have seen the effect my (and Jeff's) perseverance has had on non-believers and I know they know it is not on our own power.  I also know many non-believers would be skeptical of a healing and a testimony of healing might not have as great an impact on them because of their unbelief.  

We have seen some who were away from church or never been part of a church, come to the Lord.  I can not tell you it was definitely our influence but I believe that was a huge part of it.  We have had others ask us, "how do you make it"  and we have been able to share of God's faithfulness and of the Christian community's support.  The song goes on "He never promised that the cross would not get heavy and the hill would not be hard to climb.  He never offered our victories without fighting but He said help would always come in time.  Just remember when you're standing in the valley of decision and the adversary says gives in, just hold on, my God will show up and He will take you through the fire again."

We need to remember in this age of "prosperity preaching", "name it and claim it" theology, etc.  God never promised our lives on earth would be easy or without trial.  In fact, he tells us we WILL be persecuted and we WILL have trials and tribulation but to rejoice for HE has overcome this world.  That is where our brightest testimony shows to the world-through it all we remain faithful and remain fervent in our belief this life is not "it"-the next life in heaven is what we should put our hope in.

 Are we willing to allow our heavenly Father to accomplish His purpose through us?  God is working all your trials for good.  Maybe He has a plan to bring more of His children into right relationship with Him through your example of faith in trial.  Maybe He has a little perfecting to do in your spirit while He walks with you through your fire.  Or maybe, just maybe, He’s ready to have you join Him in the throne room of heaven.  

I don’t pretend to know why God allows some to struggle more than others.  I don’t have a clue why some are miraculously healed while others suffer in their afflictions. I believe Beth Moore says it best in her “Daniel” Bible study.  She believes there are three possible God ordained outcomes to the fires in our lives:
1.  God will deliver you FROM the fire to BUILD your faith.
2.  God will deliver you THROUGH the fire to REFINE your faith.
3.  God will deliver you BY the fire into your heavenly home to PERFECT (complete) your faith. 

I hope you hear me-I believe in healing, I believe God is healing me and will soon complete that healing.  I believe God will be glorified in my healing and I continue to pray for that day.  However,  I  know He wants to be glorified and use me in my trials as well.  

Your Response
Close your eyes and envision yourself in the very fire of your trial, now look in your minds eye to your right and envision your precious Savior sitting beside of you.  Take His hand in yours.  Thank God He is beside you in every situation.  Thank Him because you will come out of this fire without a single hair singed or even the smell of smoke on you!

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